For the everyday Instagram user, the “like” counter reflects how well your post performs and serves as an essential feature for businesses and influencers alike. For Instagram users in the US, however, the Facebook-owned subsidiary has confirmed that it will commence its experimentation of hiding the feature, starting this week.
While that may sound like an imminent disaster, the impact is not as severe as suggested. Users will still be able to see the total number of “likes” gathered for their posts on Instagram, but the counter itself will not be visible to their followers or visitors.
During an interview with WIRED, Adam Mosseri, CEO of Instagram, told the publication that the reason behind this controversial change is to decrease the sense of pressure and competition; the company realised that some users are obsessed with using the “like” counter as a form of status symbol of their presence on the social media platform.
Fortunately, Mosseri stated that the test will not apply to everyone, but will only go live on select accounts while the update rolls in. From there, Instagram will be keeping track of how much it will impact creators, and also observe the changes in user interaction on the platform.
Prior to its planned rollout in the US, Instagram already tested the feature in other countries including Brazil, Canada, and Japan in May this year. It is not known if the company plans to expand the test to other countries like Malaysia.